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Army hosts first outing for Kashmir’s deaf and mute to snow carnival

Mute residents of Dadhkai village enjoyed their first ever outing to a snow carnival to the fullest

It was a novel and pleasant experience for the deaf and mute residents of Jammu and Kashmir’s Dadhkai village in Doda district, as for the first time they had a day out to take part and enjoy snow carnival due to Indian Army’s efforts. Army’s Rashtriya Rifles recently adopted this village to ensure development of its tribal population.

Located 105 kilometres from Bhaderwah town, this hilltop tribal village is home to 105 families and of these 55 mysteriously have at least one person who can neither speak or hear. In all there are 78 such people — 41 women and 30 children aged three to 15 years, according to the officials.

Rashtriya Rifle jawans teaching sign language to children of the village

In a first experience, 30 of these deaf and mute residents of the village travelled 137 km to enjoy the snow carnival. They participated with enthusiasm in several activities including snow sledging, skiing, tube slides, snow trekking and tug of war.

Talking to the media, Bhalessa Block Development Council Chairman Mohammed Hanief and resident of Dadhkai appreciated the efforts of the Army and said that it proved that they had truly adopted the village in letter and spirit. Three of Hanief’s family members can neither hear nor speak. “To bring these special villagers to participate in a snow festival is an appreciable step by our Army, for which we will remain indebted to them,” he remarked.

An RR officer observed: “Seeing their enthusiasm while participating in various activities made us proud.:

The carnival was jointly organised by the Bhaderwah Development Authority, Rashtriya Rifles and Jawahar Institute of Mountaineering to boost tourism in the region.

Silent village

Dadhkai is known as “silent village” who suffer from this genetic disorder. Though this serious issue drew attention of various medical institutions of the country no remedy has so far been found. The first case was reported way back in 1931 and now the number was spiralling.

The Bhaderwah based RR unit officers visit the village and have initiated steps to teach the children suffering hearing impairment, sign language.

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